Thursday, January 27, 2011

halfway there

This post was written on January 22.

January 18 was just an ordinary day, like any other. A Tuesday. School was cancelled, actually, due to the Kerala State Youth Festival, so I played with the girls and did some laundry. The day before had been equally commonplace. I had 7th and 8th grade classes that day—we reviewed nouns and adjectives, and I taught them a song. 

So what was special about January 18, you ask?

January 18, my friends, was half way; the midpoint of this incredible journey; the day after which, with each passing day, I have more time behind me in Kerala than I do ahead of me.

It’s kind of a weird, surreal realization to make. 1) That so much time has passed, and 2) that what time remains is sure to dwindle quickly.

An appropriate time for reflection on YAV India part 1, I found myself thinking about the things I love about being here. And specifically, about being at Buchanan.

I love when Sneha, an 8th grade student, chases me down the hallway just to say hi and ask me how I am. She literally trembles with happiness when in my presence, and I’m pretty sure that talking to me for 2 seconds makes her entire day. It is SO endearing.

I love when the ammammas (cooks) joke with me in Malayalam. Most of the time the joke is that I don’t know what they’re saying.

I love when the students ‘get’ my lessons; when I can see the light bulb go on over their heads. When they enthusiastically raise their hands to answer questions; the look of surprised satisfaction on their faces when they get a question right.

I love when the 5th graders make me random cards. The latest one was for New Years.

I love days like today, when I saw (or was seen by, rather) a group of TTC students at the Youth Festival and was rushed at with screams of “Madi Chechi!!!” and huge smiles.

I love that I can think of this place and two things come to mind. Happiness. And home.

To Maggie, Jim, and all the other YAVs around the world…throughout the ups and downs—here’s to making the most of part 2.

“People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered; Forgive them anyway. If you are kind, People may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives; Be kind anyway. If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies; Succeed anyway. If you are honest and frank, People may cheat you; Be honest and frank anyway. What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight; Build anyway. If you find serenity and happiness, They may be jealous; Be happy anyway. The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow; Do good anyway. Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough; Give the world the best you've got anyway. You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and God; It was never between you and them anyway.” -Mother Teresa

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